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LA Restaurant Needed - West Hollywood/Beverly Hills/Santa Monica [moved from General Topics board]

l
Lisaberry Jul 3, 2012 05:36 AM

Hi -

Headed to LA for one night and need a fun,yummy restaurant to take our three boys to - we don't want a chain but also want to be comfortable enough with three kids that we can enjoy our meal. Boys are 9, 8 and 5 and are well-behaved (really!) Good atmosphere, good food, perhaps Asian fare but open to any?! Tried Mozza but it's booked. Any suggestions?

  1. wienermobile Jul 3, 2012 09:05 AM

    Here are some links that may help. Welcome to LA.
    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/789013
    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/830639
    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/822214
    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/775624

    Hope this helps and if you have questions please ask.

    3 Replies
    1. re: wienermobile
      PeterCC Jul 3, 2012 09:23 AM

      Here's another: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/842867

      I'm going to sound like a broken record, but I think FIG would be a great choice. Comfortable yet somewhat upscale, kid-friendly, fantastic food. And if you go between 5 PM and 6 PM, nearly everything (including drinks) is 50% off during "FIG at Five" (call to make a reservation).

      OP, don't know where you're from or what cuisines are available to you, but if you could venture a bit out of the areas you listed, you could go to Koreatown for KBBQ. That'll fit the "Asian fare" aspect of your request, and kids generally love the whole cooking-at-your-table thing.

      The top recs are usually Park's for great beef, Don Dae Gam for great pork, and many many others. I like Soowon Galbi for a good all-around place. If you don't want to go that far out, you could do Japanese yakiniku, which is the same general concept. Tokyo Kalbi in West L.A. is a great choice.

      1. re: PeterCC
        wienermobile Jul 3, 2012 09:30 AM

        +1 For Park's BBQ, My kids love it. Wonderful meats cooked at your table with great Korean Flavors and great service.
        http://www.parksbbq.com/

        1. re: wienermobile
          d
          Dirtywextraolives Jul 3, 2012 10:29 AM

          I was thinking the same thing, but didn't know if they wanted to venture downtown & sometimes trying to cross the city at rush hour to get to dinner at a decent dinner hour is very difficult.

    2. Ciao Bob Jul 3, 2012 09:40 AM

      When I was that age my Dad brought me to (the old, West Hollywood) Spago when I visited LA. Never forgot it. Saw Roger Moore AND Sean Connery having dinner - two Bonds!!!!
      I think (the new, Beverly Hills) Spago maybe getting renovated this summer but if not I would go there (assuming money is no object and your kids are as well-behaved as you say).
      Otherwise look at
      Matsuhisa or Nobu
      Cut
      The Grill on the Alley
      Salt's Cure
      BierBeisl
      Sotto
      Picca

      3 Replies
      1. re: Ciao Bob
        d
        Dirtywextraolives Jul 3, 2012 10:31 AM

        I love your suggestions, but I would not take a 9, 8 & 5 year old to places as expensive as CUT or Matsuhisa!! Most kids are just not sophisticated enough to appreciate the cost of a dinner there.

        1. re: Dirtywextraolives
          Ciao Bob Jul 3, 2012 10:46 AM

          <<Most kids >>
          Agree 100%, dwo, however, the OP tried Mozza which I find fairly expensive and sophisticated, so I assume we are dealing with some precocious future-hounds. I should point out that there is a large price dichotomy in my suggestions between the first 4 and the last 4.

          1. re: Ciao Bob
            d
            Dirtywextraolives Jul 3, 2012 10:58 AM

            Yes, you are probably right..... I have taken my kids to Mozza before when they were younger, so it's definitely doable. That lasagne is to die for....

      2. d
        Dirtywextraolives Jul 3, 2012 10:48 AM

        When I read the word "fun", I think of chains, unfortunately. Like Benihana & Buca Di Beppo.... But I don't think that's what you're looking for. But know there are two of them here in Santa Monica.

        Mexican is very prevalent out here & you can find many family friendly spots all over the city. In Santa Monica, Border Grill is a good spot and has kids plates, in addition to more refined Latin plates. There's an El Torito Grill,(I know, another chain!) but it's a nice one in Beverly Hills. You may want to venture east a bit to mid -city and check out the Farmers Market at 3rd & Fairfax. It's touristy, but Loteria Grill is a good Mexican bet there, plus there are other spots, in case not everyone is in agreement. There's also another branch of Loteria opening on the 3rd street Promenade, but don't think they are open just yet.

        As far as Asian, a robata grill / itzakaya type place may fit the bill. Just off of the Santa Monica promenade is a place called Musha. It's very similar to bars in Tokyo, and it's not all sushi. But beware it is small, and popular. There is also another spot in the Santa Monica Place mall, at the southern end of the Promenade, called Ozumo. Haven't been personally, but know it is there. At the other end of Santa Monica is Typhoon, at the SM airport, that is Pan Asian, and may be fun for your boys to watch the planes come in & take off.

        Hope that helps!

        3 Replies
        1. re: Dirtywextraolives
          PeterCC Jul 3, 2012 11:10 AM

          > When I read the word "fun", I think of chains...

          TMI!!! Oh, you meant restaurant chains? ;-)

          1. re: PeterCC
            d
            Dirtywextraolives Jul 3, 2012 12:18 PM

            LMAO..... ! Thanks, I needed that laugh!!

          2. re: Dirtywextraolives
            d
            dgusanz Jul 6, 2012 08:29 AM

            Loteria on 3rd st Promenade is open - atho about 3 weeks ago, service had kinks....

          3. l
            latindancer Jul 5, 2012 09:02 PM

            You don't mention when you're coming to LA but we have dined @ Plancheck on Sawtelle with a 5 year old and it was perfect. The food is outstanding...he loved their Short Rib Pot Roast that's served with cubed, highly seasoned root vegetables. Their Smokey Fried Chicken is my favorite...it's, imo, the best fried chicken in LA. We all began our meal with a delicious Butter Lettuce Salad and accompanied our meal with their Sweet Potato Waffle Fries. Finished the entire meal with made-to-order Crueller Donuts, hot, served with bananas and whipped cream. The portion sizes are perfect...small and just the right amount of food. The service is outstanding and friendly. I can't think of a better place to take kids...it's a casual, noisy, busy place. Street parking and valet service. Excellent.

            6 Replies
            1. re: latindancer
              d
              Dirtywextraolives Jul 5, 2012 09:49 PM

              I have been wanting to try them for some time, but knew no one who had tried them yet. Thanks for the rec, will be trying them soon.

              1. re: Dirtywextraolives
                wienermobile Jul 5, 2012 10:18 PM

                +1 for Plan Check. Their Pastrami Nosh Sandwich is wonderfuly delicious as is their smokey fried chicken. Great burgers too all from the original Umami executive chef.
                http://www.plancheckbar.com/

                1. re: Dirtywextraolives
                  l
                  latindancer Jul 6, 2012 10:10 AM

                  I would be remiss if I didn't mention their outside dining....casual tables/chairs right on Sawtelle. Also their booths that make dining with kids easy. Their dessert menu also offers ice cream bars.
                  It'll always be our 'go-to' place for dining with children because the food is that outstanding, not 'over the top expensive' and portion sizes are perfect. You will not be disappointed.

                  1. re: latindancer
                    d
                    Dirtywextraolives Jul 6, 2012 03:00 PM

                    We went for lunch today and you were so right! We weren't disappointed and EVERYTHING was delicious!! Both kids had the PCBs, plain burgers with the dashi Americanized cheese, no frou frou toppings for these two! They loved them, I have to say, they were juicy, soft & delicious! I got the southern fry chicken sandwich, really tasty, I couldn't leave any of it behind, though I was getting full! But the surprise star, that butter lettuce salad with the pickled egg, smoked almonds, crisped cheddar, apple & creamy mustard dressing - I will be attempting to recreate this at home, but Wow! It was wonderful! Can't wait to take my hubby soon. I am jealous of those who work or live in that neighborhood, what a jewel!

                    1. re: Dirtywextraolives
                      l
                      latindancer Jul 8, 2012 09:00 AM

                      Glad you and your kids like it :). That butter lettuce salad is really outstanding.

                      1. re: latindancer
                        d
                        Dirtywextraolives Jul 8, 2012 09:51 PM

                        Yes, you were right, it really is superb. I can't wait to try to replicate it at home! Thanks again!

              2. m
                maudies5 Jul 5, 2012 09:11 PM

                Take the kids to Katsuya. I am most familiar with the Brentwood location. My grandkids love this restaurant. Something yummy for everyone and kid-friendly.

                1. wienermobile Jul 5, 2012 09:15 PM

                  Milo and Olive in Santa Monica would be a great choice but they are very small and don't take reservations so go early for some great pizzas and so much more including wonderful homemade pastries.
                  http://www.miloandolive.com/

                  5 Replies
                  1. re: wienermobile
                    m
                    maudies5 Jul 5, 2012 09:49 PM

                    I'll be at Milo and Olive tomorrow around 0800 with a 4 year old. I'll give feedback. The little one loves open kitchens.

                    1. re: wienermobile
                      d
                      Dirtywextraolives Jul 5, 2012 09:52 PM

                      I've wanted to try this place with my kids, but don't see anything very kid friendly on the menu I downloaded. What did you & your kids try?

                      1. re: Dirtywextraolives
                        PeterCC Jul 5, 2012 10:19 PM

                        My kids liked the garlicky flavor of the garlic knots, but not the whole cloves of garlic themselves. Even though it's already served with (in) bread, if they served the knots with some crostini with it for spreading (something hard and toasted, not soft and oily like the knot itself), I think it would have been more appealing to the kids ("garlic bread!"). They liked the burrata pizza as well, but then they like prosciutto.

                        Here's my review post of our first time having Milo and Olive (takeout): http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/849281

                        When you go, please make sure you have your whole party with you and make sure they don't wander off. The last time we tried to eat there, they gave our table away because two of our party had gone to the Petco two blocks away after being told the wait time would be twice as long as it ended up being, even though we could see them walking back. I detail what happened here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8561.... For now, we can't bring ourselves to patronize the place because of that incident, but it is good food, and would be fine with kids.

                        1. re: PeterCC
                          westsidegal Jul 6, 2012 08:12 AM

                          "they gave our table away" ??
                          when i was last there, i was under the impression that all tables were communal tables?
                          has that changed?
                          was i wrong?

                          1. re: westsidegal
                            PeterCC Jul 6, 2012 08:25 AM

                            They have two four-tops I believe and then one large communal table. Or maybe it was two large communal tables, I can't remember. We were a party of four and four seats were opening up. They were taking names and seating people because it was packed. It wasn't everyone for themselves.

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